The aim of this general guide is to help explain how illustration licensing works, and hopefully remove much of the uncertainty and nervousness a small business owner or marketer might feel when commissioning an illustrator.
Now, working for free is a highly contentious issue in the creative industry and something I would not generally do, but I believe that sometimes it has a place - I’m certainly not the only designer who has ever chosen to do ‘pro bono’ work for a charity.
In 2018, I’m offering some pro bono design work to help a Bristol based, charitable organisation get their visual identity in order.
A strong identity can really help give credibility and presence to a charity, helping them gain cut through and therefore enabling them to do more of what they do best.
I’ve written this post, specifically with a start-up or small business owner in mind, and particularly those who are looking to commission a new brand identity. I’d like to help bring some clarity to the following:
How best to approach a designer, initially for quoting purposes
Ultimately how to find the best fit for you, in terms of who to commission
What’s It Like To Work With Me?
A Guide to the Process Stages of Your Design or Illustration Project
Commissioning a designer or illustrator, to work with you on a creative project can be a little daunting for some. Especially if you haven’t commissioned creative before, it’s hard to know what to expect. In this post, I’ve tried to break the process down, to show the various stages we would undertake in working together - & hopefully it'd be a pleasant and fun experience!
I was contacted recently by a teacher at St Ninian's High School in the Isle of Man, who had been researching ELLI: The 'Effective Lifelong Learning Inventory' with his pupils. If you haven't heard of ELLI, it's all about learning to be the best YOU there could possibly be, whatever your age and stage of life, and when relating to children this system often uses a set of 7 animal characters to help explain the different learning traits.
I wanted to document a recent collaboration project I worked on with Year 6 pupils at Henleaze Junior School.
I was asked by the school to work with the whole year group (around 90 pupils) to create 1 large art piece to be displayed in the school. For me this was quite a challenge in terms of the scale of the collaboration, the size of the group. I had previously worked with HJS on their school 'Shaun the Sheep' project so it was good to be invited back!
Collaboration between Designer and Client...
Can this make all the difference for a creative team of one?
Last month I attended Bristol Media’s Vision Conference - a really insightful and interesting event, delivering an impressive range of speakers, both creative and digital thinkers who offered their individual takes on the theme ‘Connecting Creativity’.
A thread that was touched on by a number of the speakers, was how to get the best out of teams of ‘creatives’. Keynote speaker Margaret Heffernan put forward the idea that there should not be seen to be creative people and ‘not-creative’ people, but that in a team everyone should be given the opportunity to input when developing solutions to problems.
I completely get that. But how does this work when there’s just you - a team of one?
This post is intended for small to medium business owners, individuals running not-for-profit organisations, and also marketing managers. To give ideas on how a creative approach - design, illustration or a combination of the two - can enhance your output and help engage with your audience. And, crucially, for any spend to be of good value for you.
A previous client of mine, a marketeer working on a client’s website, asked me for some advice about fonts. She wanted to use some creative/fun fonts but was unsure where to get them from and what was involved with regard to licensing.
There are so many font websites out there, it can be pretty confusing. So I thought I’d share the advice I gave her in case it could be useful for anyone else.
These pointers are intended for people who want to have a basic understanding of font use and licensing, particularly for websites.
This is an update on a previous post which outlined some questions to answer before briefing a new logo design.
Revised, improved, and building on my experience of working on new brand designs for a range of clients, I have now updated these questions to include some additional crucial information, and turned it into a PDF document, ready to fill in. DOWNLOAD HERE
Every illustration job is different. There are a number of key factors that a professional illustrator will want to know about in order to calculate their fee for your specific project.
In this post, I will outline the main considerations I focus on when quoting for illustration work. Also included is a link to download a handy PDF which will help you collate the crucial information needed when briefing an illustrator and asking them to provide costs for your project.
The Shaun in the City Bristol trail is now well under way! 70 giant sculptures of Shaun the Sheep created by by a host of artists, designers and celebrities have been set free in locations around the city, and they'll be there until August 31st... if you're in Bristol you will have no doubt spotted some! At the end of the trail, the sculptures will go to auction, along with the additional 50 Shauns that formed a London trail earlier in the year - all to raise money for children in hospitals across the UK. For more information, and to keep updated on the latest sheep related news, please visit the Shaun in the City website
I was fortunate enough to have been selected to create 2 Shauns for the trail, which I worked on in November last year, and the second one a few months back in February. I've put together a couple of 'photo-stories' to document the process of each one.
I've been particularly quiet in terms of social media and blog posts of late. The main reason for this is that aside from my usual workload I have also been busy painting for Shaun in the City - a project organised by Aardman and the Grand Appeal to create over 100 giant sculptures of Shaun the Sheep, which will appear as two different art trails in Bristol and London and raise money for children's hospitals across the UK...
To coincide with the launch of my own new website, I thought I'd share a list of questions I ask clients who approach me to design a website for them. (And yes I did try to answer the questions myself before embarking on my own re-design!)
Now these questions are essentially to gain an overview of your business and what you need a website to do for you, as well as who it should speak to...
In the process of revamping my portfolio website, inevitably some things didn't quite fit or were cut to make room for newer projects. In a quest to pare down to a minimal approach, I focussed on primarily showing the finished, polished work I produce. However, I do think that it is still useful to show some of the process involved in producing the work I create.
The image above shows very simply the method I have gone through to produce a finished vector illustration...
Are you in need of a designer or illustrator for your business/project, but not sure how to go about finding one who’s right for you? And also what would be the point in narrowing your search area?
If that sounds of interest, I have written a guest post over on the Drawn in Bristol Blog, sharing thoughts on why it makes absolute sense to start your search close to home...
So, ‘Logo Head’ on! You need a new logo/brand for your business and are at (or nearly at) the stage of briefing a designer - if that sounds like you, but you're struggling to formulate exactly what it is you want and need, keep reading...